AFTER 55 years of service to the people of Helensburgh and district, the Church of Scotland’s Clyde View Eventide Home closed its doors.
Many elderly members of the community were residents at Clyde View, including several centenarians, and the final residents were transferred to other local homes.
Clyde View at 12 East Montrose Street, which overlooks East King Street Park, also offered home support, day care and respite care services.
The decision to close the Home was taken by CrossReach, the Church of Scotland Social Care Council, because of the cost of meeting new building regulations for residential care for the elderly. The closure was marked with a Service of Thanksgiving.
The home had been earmarked for closure since the Church of Scotland undertook a major review of older people’s services in 2003. Part of the strategy adopted at that time was to relocate the day services, and this was successfully achieved at The Oasis in Garelochhead.
Marlene Smith, regional director West of Scotland for CrossReach, said: “It is with great regret that we had to come to the decision to close Clyde View. The building continues to deteriorate and is unfit for purpose, making it difficult to provide the high quality of care which is the hallmark of CrossReach.
“We worked closely with the 23 service users, their families and the local authority to find appropriate alternative homes to meet individual care needs.”
Consultations were held with members of staff — 28 were permanent employees, 17 relief staff — to discuss options including redeployment to other CrossReach residential homes.
The Home was opened in 1953, three years after Colonel A.Laird MacConnel donated the Clyde View mansion to the Church of Scotland. The adjacent Ron Bank was bought, and the two properties were joined together in a refurbishment programme.
The Rev. Gavin McFadyen, minister of Park Church, said: “The Home was always well supported by the community, through various fundraising activities and the commitment of a Circle of Friends.
“Many trips and outings were organised for the residents. Regular services of worship were also led by the Chaplain and members of the local churches.”
Other local organisations often provided entertainment for residents, as did pupils from local schools who were regular visitors.
Mr McFadyen said: “For any community, the closure of a place of care such as Clyde View in an occasion of sadness. There have been many memories built up and many bonds of friendship formed over the years.
“For the residents, Clyde View was a place of comfort and security, as well as an environment in which the Christian ethos of care and compassion was demonstrated day by day.
“For the families of residents, it has meant a change for their loved one, at a stage in their life when any change is difficult. For the staff too, it is also a time of uncertainty, as new jobs are sought.”
In May 2009 the Dunbritton Housing Association lodged a planning application with Argyll and Bute Council to demolish the property and replace it with a new residential complex containing 36 two and three-bedroom flats for the elderly, with communal areas and staff accommodation
The association is undertaking the project in partnership with CrossReach, which wants to continue to provide quality care for the elderly in Helensburgh. Residents will live in their own private units, but will have round-the-clock care available in the complex.
- An original bench from Helensburgh Station which sat in the Clyde View grounds for use by residents and visitors was acquired by Helensburgh Heritage Trust. After it was refurbished, the Trust lent it to First Scotrail and it is now sited prominently in Helensburgh Central again close to the booking office.